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    The Black Horse

    Chapter 16


    One’s Luck with Women Isn’t Shallow

    Translated by Wook
    Edited by Wook


     


    Chapter 16 : One’s Luck with Women Isn’t Shallow


     

    Wen Tao was waiting for the new bride to enter his residence in Huai’an. In the front hall, a group of friends similar in age sat to congratulate him. This time around, they came from Suzhou to accompany him while impatiently stretching their necks to take a look at this new wife Si’s appearance in the bright red wedding attire.

     

    Wen Tao, as the young leader of the salt group, was always surrounded by a group of young men wherever he went. Well, every young man except for Bai Shiqi from the shipping group. They never saw eye to eye from their childhood to adulthood. Their family’s patriarchs, Bai Zhenting and Wen Bao, were also seeing this as a helpless case.

     

    A young man who had heard of Miss Song Si’s storytelling tried to please him: “Brother Wen’s luck with women is truly not shallow. That Miss Song Si, not only good at storytelling and literate, her appearance is also excellent.  Today, us as brothers really have to congratulate Brother Wen for marrying such an outstanding woman!”

     

    Wen Tao laughed, feeling proud of himself. He took the lead to make a toast: “Come, come. This little master has been a groom so often, what’s so weird about taking one more concubine. Let’s have a cup.”

     

    Everyone lifted their cups and cheered when suddenly, a man with red silk tied around his waist rushed in from outside. This was precisely the attire used for the group who went to the Song House to pick up the bride today. With panic on his face, the man walked in and shouted: “Young Leader, not good, someone has kidnapped the bride!”

     

    Wen Tao became furious. He tossed the wine cup in his hand aside and stood. He was almost as tall as Zhao Wujiu, his clothes were covering the strong and muscled flesh with honey-colored skin under it, with two thick eyebrows full of vitality. He asked the man who brought the news: “Which bastard dares to ruin Laozi’s happy occasion?”

     

    Seeing his complexion, the man did not dare to utter a single word, but Wen Tao immediately recalled.

     

    Bai Shiqi has returned?”

     

    The man nodded frantically, his ability to speak returned almost in an instant: “Not only has he returned, but he… he had also beaten Big Bro Third Hu. At the moment, he’s blocking the road to prevent the procession from passing, and said to let Young Leader personally pick up the bride…”

     

    Wen Tao sneered coldly: “Prepare the horse.”

     

    The group of young men who came to congratulate also knew Bai Shiqi. When they heard that this devil incarnation had returned, the discussion became lively: “Brother Wen, we can go over in your stead.”

     

    “Precisely. Bai Shiqi is acting too willfully. The Song family had already received a large sum of money for you to redeem the lady, they must have already spent it…”

     

    More people joined in the fun, adding more fuel and firewood to create bigger chaos. They were looking forward to the fight of these two big money trees.

     

    A subordinate led a horse over. Wen Tao, with a stern expression, turned his body and got on the horse. His legs kicked the horse’s belly and led it outside. Behind him, someone laughed and started discussing: “It seems like Brother Wen is very angry this time ah.”

     

    Another person who knew of the inside story shook his head: “I’m afraid that Bai Shiqi is even angrier than Brother Wen. One heard that Bai Shiqi is very good to Miss Song Si. Every time he visits Huai’an, he will surely run to the Song House. If not because of the suppression from Leader Bai, maybe the person will already be brought to the Bai residence in Suzhou to become the young mistress. He has just returned and immediately heard that his beloved woman is about to be married to another man, it’d be a wonder if he doesn’t go mad!”

     

    From far away, Wen Tao saw Bai Shiqi sitting on a weird thing. Yu Si was standing and bending his waist at the side, looking like a dried shrimp. Amidst the bitterness, he still tried to persuade: “Young Leader, we cannot intervene in this matter. How about we go back?”

     

    Bai Shiqi acted like she did not hear him, while Wen Tao rode his horse closer and his lungs nearly exploded in rage.

     

    Hu Xian was kneeling on his four limbs with a bloody nose and swollen face with a sheet of blanket on top of his body, while Bai Shiqi was sitting on his back, playing with a small knife in her hand. From time to time she would maneuver the knife around Hu Xian’s neck: “Third Hu, you should blame yourself for following an incompetent master. He just has to snatch this master’s woman as a provocation. Do you know? If I draw the knife from this position, the blood will spurt out for at least 10 meters, then your little life will perish!”

     

    Hu Xian felt the ice-cold knife blade on his neck and could not help shivering.

     

    The people from the salt group who were included in the procession group were standing far away. They did not dare to act rashly—who would have thought that Young Leader Bai would be such a scoundrel? One approached without saying anything, pulled Hu Xian from the top of his horse, and started beating him. By the time the rest of them could react to save him, Bai Shiqi had already taken out a dagger and placed it on Hu Xian’s neck and forced everyone to retreat.

     

    Wen Tao’s eyes reddened: “Bai Shiqi, this is simply bullying intolerably!”

     

    Bai Shiqi absent-mindedly played with the small knife: “You’re no better. Have you not been waiting for this day?”

     

    Wen Tao had been keeping his hateful true character deep within. He never lacked female performers in Huai’an city, so why should he fix his attention on Miss Song Si? Meeting Bai Shiqi who was pretending to be deaf, he cursed angrily: “If you truly admire Miss Song Si, you don’t have to fight over her with me. Just call me big brother and send me and my entourage off respectfully, why the long face?”

     

    “Are you serious with these words?” Bai Shiqi put away the knife, then patted Hu Xian’s face. Her hand was immediately dirtied by the oily sweat, so she wiped it on his clothes several times, then she stood and kicked him twice: “Your master has arrived, get lost!”

     

    As if given an amnesty, Third Hu crawled hastily to Wen Tao’s side.

     

    Wen Tao was sitting tall on top of the horse, looking down on Bai Shiqi, and showed an ill-intentioned smile: “Anyway, one has already redeemed the person from the Song family, so it would be unreasonable to return her back. Moreover, Miss Si is not young anymore and should be married as soon as possible. Today, either you or I will marry her!”

     

    Bai Shiqi: “… …”

     

    Wen Tao looked as if he had found her weakness behind the strong façade and started ridiculing: “It is spread outside that Young Leader Bai is a young romantique, turns out he looks like silver but is actually just wax1!” Then he commanded the procession group: “Since this master has personally come to welcome the bride, everyone can go back to the residence. The banquet is ongoing and we cannot let the guests wait in vain. This master still wants to be a groom today.”

     

    “On a happy day like this, you’ve beaten Third Hu until he can’t even walk properly. However, I won’t hold you accountable. Since you’ve arrived just in time, how about giving me some congratulatory gifts, then I won’t pursue this matter further.” He urged his horse forward and using the horsewhip, raised the sedan chair’s curtain. Inside the sedan chair, the bride’s veil had fallen off prematurely, her mouth was stuffed with a red cloth, her makeup was ruined from crying, and her upper body was bound with red silk. She was obviously unwilling to be married and had to be stuffed into the sedan chair.

     

    Bai Shiqi looked at the tied-up person. At first, she did not even try to acknowledge the sedan chair, but now turning her head only to witness this scene, she almost fainted in anger: “Wen Tao, you son of a bitch! Only someone who robs women would do this!”

     

    Wen Tao used the horsewhip to struck Song Si’s cheek without the tiniest bit of pity: “This person here is almost married to this master already, but still dares to think about another wild man?”

     

    The shipping group’s carriage was stationed at the side. From the moment the bride was “kidnapped” until now, Zhao Wujiu had been sitting calmly inside the carriage. Zhao Ziheng had thought several times to alight the carriage to get in on the action, but he was put to a stop by the cousin brother’s severe gaze, so he could only raise the curtain unwillingly to watch the movement. He saw Bai Shiqi beating up people and hated that he could not give his support. At this moment, seeing that the other party’s master was such a crazy bastard, he did not care anymore. He raised the curtain and shouted: “Shiqi, it’s just a concubine, just accept her. If you bring her home at least you can still care for her properly, however, if one lets this kid bring her home, maybe she will disappear like fragrant and jade2 in three to five years!”

     

    Bai Shiqi looked as if she had swallowed goldthread3, full of misery.

     

    Wen Tao did not come here for a fight. He took back the whip and with a smile but not a smile: “Shiqi, Big Brother is waiting for your decision! Either way, today this girl is a married person, if you don’t marry her, then I will marry her. The number of concubines in my backyard is not small, and this one is just something fresh for me. However, I’ve heard that… You’re very fond of this girl. Once she enters my door, don’t you regret it!”

     

    Bai Shiqi was suddenly enlightened: “So, you want to give me this?”

     

    Wen Tao laughed loudly, his heroic eyebrows were raised. His expression was full of indescribable joy: “Being able to make things difficult for you and adding more blocks in your way, no matter how much money I, this master, have to spend, is well worth it!” From the top of the horse, he looked down on Bai Shiqi’s charming face: “This is not a big deal at all. It’s just a woman. If you want it, Big Brother won’t say anything further and just let you take her. It just so happened that the banquet at home is already prepared and I’ve already drunk a cup of tea to receive Miss Si into my house, and as for the rest of the matters, I, this big brother, have already arranged it in your stead! However, if you’re unwilling—“ His face turned cold: “Then I apologize, but I’ll take Miss Si today.”

     

    From the carriage, Zhao Ziheng was worried for Bai Shiqi: “Shiqi, even if you take her, it’s not the end of the world. However, if one lets this bastard marry her home, it will truly be a loss.”

     

    Zhao Wujiu let out a cough, this youngster kept talking nonsense.

     

    Inside the carriage, Qiu Yunping was silent, Shu Changfeng quietly asked him: “It’s just a woman, why is Young Leader Bai worrying so much?”

     

    He looked melancholy: “Young Leader has fallen into the pit that Wen Tao dug. If the Leader knows that he is taking concubines, he will truly break his legs. It’s not a problem if he wants to indulge in pleasure outside, but he should never bring women home.”

     

    Shu Changfeng: “… …”

     

    Even with Leader Bai being so strict, Bai Shiqi still turned out this obstreperous and mischievous. If he were to loosen just a little bit, one truly could not imagine what kind of ‘glorious achievement’ she would have made.

     

    From the sedan chair, Miss Song Si was looking at Bai Shiqi with teary eyes and seemingly asking her silently for help. Bai Shiqi gritted her teeth and made up her mind: “Then I shall receive Big Brother Wen’s good thought. I, this brother, will kindly accept!”

     

    Wen Tao’s expression was difficult to understand for a moment, but the black cloud quickly dispersed. He quickly dismounted from the horse and patted her shoulder several times: “Then get on the horse and return home, we have to drink the wedding wine!”

     

    Hu Xian looked at this scene foolishly. He could not understand how the young leader changed his face so quickly, then he was kicked: “You fool, still not moving!”

     

    Yu Si looked like he was suffering from an unspeakable misery, and still tried to advise again and again: “Young Leader, don’t you need to think more about this matter ah?”

     

    Wen Tao cruelly rejected him and bent his body jokingly: “This small one shall help the groom to get on the horse.” It was truly courteous like never before.

     

    Bai Shiqi was fully aware of the pit in front of her. However, she could only resign and accept her fate. She avoided his hand and turned her body over to get on the horse: “Big Brother Wen, aren’t you going to prepare to go back to Suzhou so you can witness my dad breaking my legs personally?”

     

    Wen Tao changed his face so fast it was incredible. It really made people suspect that he had never had the intention of marrying Miss Song Si at all: “How so ah? I haven’t seen Uncle Bai in ages, it just so happened that I’ll be sending new face when I return, so I should at least visit my elder in passing!” He clutched his chest and made a distressed look: “I’ve lost both the money and the beauty, won’t you at least let me watch the show as compensation?”

     

    Bai Shiqi really wanted to laugh at his face—since childhood, this money tree’s favorite show was not the story told on the stage outside, but the chaos from the pair of Bai family’s father and son!

     

    The wedding procession moved once more, still heading to the Wen residence, however, the groom had changed.

     


     

    FOOTNOTE

    1 looks like silver but is actually just a wax (银样蜡枪头): idiom, looks good on the outside, but actually not so useful.

    2 disappear like fragrant and jade(香消玉殒): idiom, the death of a beautiful woman.

    3 swallowed goldthread: idiom, unable to speak of one’s bitter suffering.

     


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    Wook

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